Protect your teeth this Thanksgiving

Protect your teeth this Thanksgiving

Avoid bones, drink more water, take smaller bites and floss before bed

During the holidays, people tend to indulge a lot more at the dinner table. This is especially true on Thanksgiving, a day when we celebrate by eating exorbitant amounts of food. This Thanksgiving, remember to protect your teeth by following a few rules.

Don't chew on any bones.

That giant bird on your dining room table is sure to have some small bones hiding out of sight. Be careful that your bites don't contain any. It's also wise not to gnaw on any bones to remove excess turkey. Instead, use a fork or knife to pull away any meat from the bones. Biting on bones is one of the most common reasons why people chip teeth. You don't want to take an emergency visit to the dentist because of a broken tooth.

Drink lots of water.

That pumpkin pie, pecan cluster and chocolate cream cake may look and taste delicious, but they are packed full of sugar. This excessive sugar intake isn't only hard on your pancreas, it is also tough on tooth enamel. To prevent Thanksgiving Day cavities, it is smart to drink a lot of water between dishes. Water rinses away any sugar or bacteria residing in your mouth. The cleaner your mouth, the less likely you will be to develop a cavity.

Take smaller bites.

Eating all of those chewy side dishes will really exercise your jaw. As someone who suffers from TMJ, I know that chewing too much can cause jaw pain. Taking smaller bites will reduce the strain on your jaw. Plus, you may even save a few calories by eating less.

Floss before going to bed.

After chowing down on turkey and carbohydrates, you will be ready to turn in at the end of the night. Be sure to brush and floss before bed. Bacteria loves to grow while you are sleeping, so take care of your teeth before turning in for the evening. You may even be surprised by how much leftover turkey is found in-between your teeth.